Three MLB Stacks to Target: Friday, July 19th
Stacking has become a common strategy used in tournaments on FanDuel. The concept is simple – roster multiple players from teams with the best MLB odds to score the most runs.
This article will take a closer look at the three teams on FanDuel’s main slate with the highest implied run totals.
New York Yankees (7 implied run total)
Quite honestly, stacking the Yankees has mostly lost me money this season but it’s a well I keep going back to because of their unrivaled power. Even with Giancarlo Stanton’s absence, the Yankees are the most powerful team in baseball as they collectively own a beyond ridiculous .224 ISO against left-handed pitching over the last two seasons. Seven hitters in the Yankees projected lineup own ISOs north of .200 against southpaws over the last two years with Gary Sanchez (.320 ISO), Aaron Judge (.291 ISO), Luke Voit (.275 ISO), and Gleyber Torres (.263) leading the way.
While I hold a higher opinion on Kyle Freeland than most, this is an undeniably terrible spot for the 26-year-old lefty. There’s also no denying that Freeland has struggled mightily this season both in the Big Leagues and in AAA, giving up 20 HRs over 93 innings combined and owning a near double-digit walk rate across both formats. If Freeland struggles with control against the Yankees, it will come back to haunt him.
Despite the posh home matchup, the Yankees aren’t all that expensive on FanDuel and are easily obtainable with essentially any pitching option on the board.
Cleveland Indians (6.5 implied run total)
If you’re thinking you have rostered a lot of Cleveland hitters recently it’s because they are coming off a 4-game series against the Detroit Tigers. Cleveland scored 6+ runs in every game against the Tigers and now continue their string of favorable matchups as they’ll square off against Mike Montgomery and a poor Royals bullpen. Montgomery showed some flashes of upside during his time with the Cubs but has really struggled in a limited role this season allowing 17 earned runs and 6 HRs over just 27 IP. Montgomery is likely to find more success as a starter for the Royals but will be limited to 35-45 pitches on Friday night which means a lot of at-bats against what will likely be Jorge Lopez and a below-average bullpen.
Despite a HR in yesterday’s game, Jordan Luplow remains extremely cheap ($2,600) and is my favorite point-per-dollar hitting option.
Boston Red Sox (6.2 implied run total)
Will the regression monster ever get John Means? Means did allow six earned runs over six innings in his last start but in general, has run ridiculously pure in terms of run prevention this season with a spectacular 2.94 ERA. A closer look at advanced metrics shows just how unsustainable Means pre-All-Star game success is. Means’ SIERA (4.69) is nearly two whole runs higher than his ERA and is largely due to a low .253 batting average on balls in play and a high strand-rate (79.8%). In other words, opposing hitters are getting on base on balls in play at a rate significantly lower than league average (league average is .296 BABIP this season), and once they do get on base, are left on base at a rate significantly higher than league average (72.1 LOB% is league average this season).
Even if you view Means as a pitcher with an above-average skill-set, it’s highly unlikely he’s going to continue to get as lucky as he has over his first 15 starts. Means represents a favorable matchup for a Red Sox offense that as a whole has struggled against left-handed pitching this season but individually still has some extremely strong hitters. Behind Means is one of the worst bullpens in the league (5.05 xFIP, 1.83 HR/9) which opens the door for a late-inning rally even if Boston is unable to put up gaudy numbers against the Orioles starter.